Thursday, 28 May 2020

Christie Price List

"Minutes of the discussion between comrades Khalepskiy, Gobar, and mister Christie
  1. Christie only produces one type of tank and wishes to elaborate on interest in "the type of tank that you produce for sale to the US Army and abroad".
  2. No tanks are currently runners. The old one was taken apart, the new one is being assembled. The new one is similar to the old one with improvements.

Wednesday, 27 May 2020

Object 704

"To GBTU TU chief, Engineer-Colonel comrade Blagonravov

I report that the Kirov factory design bureau is completing the development of an SPG on the chassis of the Kirovets-1 tank.

The hull is characterized by the following:
  • Lower front plate: 120 mm at 55 degrees
  • Cheek plates: 120 mm at 50 degrees
  • Upper side plates: 90 mm at 45 degrees
  • Upper rear plate: 60 mm at 40 degrees
  • Lower side plates: 75  mm at 60 degrees
  • Vertical side plates: 90 mm
  • Floor and roof: 20 mm

Tuesday, 26 May 2020

76 mm vs T-34

Even though the T-34 was not designed to withstand 76 mm AP shells, trials with various kinds of 76 mm ammunition were still included in the tests of defective hulls and turrets.

"d) Firing 76 mm type 2-03545 armour piercing shells

Trials of the 2-03545 shell, accepted into service, are shown in table 11 and on figure 50. The table shows data for two different hulls: shots 21-24 and 155-168 were fired at the first hull, shots 48-58, 113-125, 140-146, and 149 were fired at the second hull.

Monday, 25 May 2020

Video: Sherman Reliability

A new video is up! This time I answer a Reddit user's question: how reliable was the Sherman tank? As you can imagine, it's not a trivial question to answer, especially due to the wide variety of Shermans that were made.

Saturday, 23 May 2020

Pre-War Potential

As worldwide tank building practice shows, it takes about five years to develop a new tank in peace time from the development of the requirements to the final product. The tank often changes significantly between envisioning and production, as happened with the T-34. The initial requirements for the BT-20 tank composed in mid-October of 1937 described a convertible drive tank weighing 13-14 tons with 20-25 mm of armour and armed with a 45 mm gun or 76 mm L-10 gun. Three years later, the tank that went into production was fully tracked, weighed 25.6 tons, had an L-11 gun and 45 mm thick armour.

The mass grew gradually during development along with the improvement of the tank's characteristics. However, the T-34 was supposed to change significantly by the summer of 1941. This T-34M was the result of changing requirements. The start of the Great Patriotic War got in the way of developing even a prototype, but the T-34M became the starting point for a whole series of tanks and had an effect on the production T-34.

Thursday, 21 May 2020

Next Generation Light SPG

The SU-76 was off to a rocky start in early 1943, and was eventually replaced in production by the more reliable SU-76M. Meanwhile, there was another SPG that could have possibly replaced it, had the stars aligned:

Wednesday, 20 May 2020

Emcha Condition

Commander of the 1st Krasnograd Mechanized Corps
Guards Lieutenant General of the Tank Forces, Krivoshein

On the technical condition of tanks arriving from repair factories #382, 97, 137 (12 M4A2, 30 MK-9) after refurbishment for equipment of the units of the 1st Krasnograd Mechanized Corps

Tuesday, 19 May 2020

Cast vs Rolled

The question of cast vs rolled armour is often encountered in specialist literature. It is typically accepted that cast armour needs to be about 10% thicker to provide the same resistance as rolled armour. This was the case with T-34 turrets: cast ones had a nominal thickness of 52 mm, turrets welded from rolled armour had a thickness of 45 mm. However, trials were held in late 1940 to confirm this theory. Defective hulls and turrets rejected by QA were used.

Results of trials with different types of shells were compared to determine the limit of partial penetration (PTP) and limit of complete penetration (PSP) in meters per second.

Monday, 18 May 2020

Soviet Tank History: T-35

Another video is up. This time I'm taking a look at pre-war heavy tank development in the USSR and some tanks that could have been accepted into service instead of the T-35, as well as what aspects of the T-35's design migrated onto later Soviet heavy tanks.

Saturday, 16 May 2020

T-26 as a Minesweeper

As armoured vehicles were built and improved, methods to combat them appeared as well. The race was only between shells and armour at first, but anti-tank mines appeared soon after. They could be used not only against tanks, but against other vehicles, and it was not necessary to completely destroy a vehicle, as a disabled tank was a perfect target for artillery. One of the countermeasures to this weapon was a mine detector installed on the tank. However, it was not that simple to implement this idea.